There were no known mechanical problems on the 7-year-old Boeing 777 from South Korea, which crashed Saturday at San Francisco International airport, killing two and injuring at least 181, an Asiana Airlines CEO said Sunday.
“We purchased this airplane in March 2006 … currently we understand that there are no engine or mechanical problems,” Yoon Young-Doo, the president and chief executive of the airline, told a press conference at company headquarters.
He said the pilots had about 19,000 hours flying experience between the two of them. He did not comment on pilot error or air traffic control problems as a potential cause of the crash.
"For now, we acknowledge that there were no problems caused by the 777-200 plane or engines," Yoon said. He said when the plane was landing, the crew made usual in flight announcements and no emergency alarm sounded.
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The two passengers killed on Asiana Airlines flight 214 were Chinese nationals, two 16-year-old girls. Chinese state media said they were Ye Mengyuan and Wang Linjia of Jiangshan Middle School in China's eastern Zhejiang province.
"I bow my head and sincerely apologize for causing concern to the passengers, families and our people,” Yoon said.
The flight from Seoul has 291 passengers and 16 crew. Of those on board, 141 were Chinese nationals, 77 were South Korean, 61 Americans, one Japanese, three Indians, three Canadians, one French, one Vietnamese, and 19 others of unidentified nationality.
“Please accept my deepest apology,” Yoon said, bowing to cameras in the press conference.
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“We’ll make our utmost efforts to cope with the tragedy.”